A MESSAGE to local traders sent from Hedon Town Council on Monday stating that the small Christmas trees erected annually outside local businesses would not be erected this year due to Covid-19 fears prompted a furore on Facebook. This prompted social-media users to campaign for the ‘Scrooge council’ not to ‘cancel Christmas’.
With Hedon currently part of a hotspot for coronavirus infections, there is a very real concern about infection and the Council in its original message apologised for having to take the action in the interests of health and safety.
In a statement issued today following its meeting last night, Hedon Town Council says:
This year the Town Council decided that it would provide the traditional Xmas trees at the Council’s expense because of the hardship being experienced by local traders; but we were also aware that there could be problems installing them due to Covid regulations.
Following the introduction of a second National Lockdown, a misunderstanding arose between the Town Clerk and members of the council as to the way forward for the Xmas trees that are erected annually on St Augustine’s Gate and Souttergate.
Councillors were unaware of the email sent on Monday from the Town Hall which said that the trees would not be going up.
In light of the misunderstanding, and taking into consideration the depth of feeling which has been expressed over the last few days, Hedon Town Council confirms that it will be erecting the Xmas trees as usual and this will be done before the end of November.
The Council has to balance the services it provides to the residents of Hedon with the duty of care it has to keep its workers safe during the current pandemic. Additional safety measures will be put in place during the erection of the trees to ensure that social distancing is maintained and we would ask members of the public to refrain from approaching our workforce whilst the work is taking place.
Hedon Town Council
13th November 2020